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Al-sabah Ruling Family and Kuwait - by Meshal Al-Sabah (Hardcover)

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This revealing account of one the world's most enigmatic and affluent ruling dynasties—by one of its own sons—is a timely argument for democracy in a paradoxical society. Meshal Al-Sabah concedes that there are more democratic mechanisms in place in Kuwait than in other Gulf states, but maintains that the monarchy is not genuinely democratic. Political domination is safeguarded through the distribution of oil revenues as welfare and economic benefits, effectively buying the support or acquiescence of the Kuwaiti people.

Yet Al-Sabah also makes the case for Kuwait as a country with vast potential, in which necessary reforms from the top down can encourage more democratic and transparent government and enable Kuwait to become an example to other states in the region. Through freedom of speech, civil rights, and political accountability, Al-Sabah argues, a more equitable and successful society can be achieved.

He further contends that the present generation is the first to consider real quality of life beyond simply raising material living standards, requiring a focus on long-term solutions to inequality and other issues.

Dr. Meshal Al-Sabah directs the Washington, DC, desk at the Kuwaiti Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Department of the Americas. He holds an MA in International Relations from the University of Chicago, and was awarded a Master in Public Administration from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. He is currently a Visiting Research Fellow at the Department of Middle East and Mediterranean Studies, King's College, London.

The uprisings that have taken place in the Arab world since 2011 continue to resonate throughout the region, including Kuwait. There are few well-known accounts of Kuwait's ruling family, let alone an account provided by an 'insider.' This book is a revealing account of one the world's most enigmatic and affluent ruling dynasties, written by one of its own sons. It is a timely argument for genuine democracy in a paradoxical society. While author Meshal Al-Sabah concedes that there are more democratic mechanisms in place in Kuwait than in other Gulf States, he maintains that the monarchy is not a genuine democracy. Political domination by selected segments of Kuwaiti society is safeguarded through the significant distribution of oil revenues as welfare and economic benefits, effectively buying the support, acceptance, or acquiescence of the Kuwaiti people. Yet, Al-Sabah also makes the case for Kuwait as a country with vast potential, in which necessary reforms from the top down can encourage a more democratic and transparent government, and enable Kuwait to become an example to other States in the region. Through freedom of speech, civil rights, and political accountability to weaken kleptocratic practices, Al-Sabah argues that a more equitable and successful society can be achieved. He further contends that the country's present generation is the first to face the imperative to improve the real quality of life beyond simply raising material living standards, requiring a focus on long-term solutions to inequality and the physical and social environments.
Number of Pages: 450
Genre: Political Science, History
Sub-Genre: Middle East / General
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Consortium Book Sales & Dist
Author: Meshal Al-Sabah
Language: English
Street Date: July 10, 2018
TCIN: 16472511
UPC: 9780863725364
Item Number (DPCI): 247-34-5883

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